Learning Objectives

8-1. Contrast groups and teams, and explain the group performance model.

The major areas of difference are size, leadership, jobs, accountability and evaluation, rewards, and objectives. A group is two or more members, with a clear leader, who perform independent jobs and experience individual accountability, evaluation, and rewards. A team has a small number of members, with shared leadership, who perform interdependent jobs and experience both individual and group accountability, evaluation, and rewards.

According to the group performance model, group performance is a function of organizational con-text, group structure, group process, and group development.

8-2. Discuss the five components of group structure.

Group types include formal or informal, functional or cross-functional, and command (man-agers and their employees) or task groups (task force and ongoing standing committees). There is no ideal group size, as size varies depending on the purpose, situation, and type of work performed; but having 5 to 9 members generally provides the best relationships and performance. Group composition is the mix of members’ skills and abilities needed to perform the task. Group leadership affects performance and can be more autocratic or shared based on the situation, but tends to be more formal as the size increases from a team to a group. Groups and teams need to accomplish objectives that can be set by the man-ager or the team.

8-3.Define the six components of group process, and describe how they are used to maximize team performance.

Group roles include task roles played to get the job done, maintenance roles played to develop and sustain the group process, and self-interest roles played for personal gain at the expense of others. Norms are unspoken rules that are expectations about behavior that are shared by group members. Cohesiveness is the extent to which members stick together. Status is the perceived ranking of group members. Decision making refers to the level of participation used to make group decisions. Conflict resolution refers to how well the group deals with conflict.

To maximize group performance, both task and maintenance roles should be played (and the self-interest role minimized), positive productive norms should be developed, every member should be respected and included for status and cohesiveness, decisions should be made using the appropriate level of participation, and conflicts should be resolved to maintain cohesive group process.

8-4.Describe the four major stages of group development and identify the appropriate leadership style usually associated with each

(1) Forming is characterized by a low development level. The appropriate management style is generally autocratic. (2) Storming is characterized by a moderate development level. The appropriate management style is generally consultative. (3) Norming is characterized by a high development level. The appropriate management style is generally participative. (4) Performing is characterized by an outstanding development level. The appropriate management style is generally empowerment.

8-5. Indicate how to develop groups into teams.

To develop a group into a team, it is important to gradually take the team through the stages of group development by changing management styles. During the transition, team members can be trained to become better team players and leaders as the team takes on more responsibility for planning, organizing/staffing, leading, and controlling the group process. The team-building organizational development technique and social events can be used with nonwork activities to help members get to know one another on a more personal level to help break down status differences and develop team cohesiveness.

8-6. Explain how to plan a meeting, conduct it, and handle problem members during the meeting.

Meetings should begin with a review of the purpose and objectives for the meeting. During the meeting, agenda items should be covered in priority order. The meeting should end with a summary of what took place and assignments to be completed for future meetings.